One of our favorite relationships on Once Upon A Time is the complicated father-son dynamic between Rumplestiltskin/Mr. Gold (Robert Carlyle) and Neal/Baelfire (Michael Raymond-James). The two just found each other after a 300-year estrangement (Rumple is decidedly more enthusiastic about this than Neal), and we can’t wait to see how the storyline will develop.
This week, Robert Carlyle weighed in on the future of the relationship between Rumple and his long-lost son: “Gold, he’s such a flawed character, so he’s trying to do the right thing but he doesn’t really know how,” Robert told TV Line.
As for his offer to turn Neal back into the 14-year-old boy he was when they parted so that he can grow up with a father: “He doesn’t know how to take that further, so it’s going to take a while to get any kind of resolution on that. But in Episode 21 or 22, something happens which changes [their relationship] forever.”
Robert wouldn’t divulge whether that change would be for the better or for the worse, but we could see it going either way. On the one hand, Rumple has made significant strides in his efforts to be a better person — both for Belle and for his son. On the other hand, he has also vowed to kill the boy who will be his “undoing” — who may be his grandson/Neal’s son, Henry. Will Neal ever be able to forgive his father for effectively abandoning him as a child? Will Rumple make the choice he couldn’t all those years ago and choose his son over magic and power? We can’t wait to find out!
How do you think the relationship between Rumple and Neal will develop? Will they ever be close again? Let us know in the comments below!
Catch the next episode of Once Upon a Time on Sunday, March 24 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.